×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Eros Int’l Doubles Online Subscriber Target After Strong Quarter

Eros International, the Indian film distribution giant, surprised investment analysts with strong subscriber numbers for its Eros Now streaming video service.

The subscription news failed to lift the company’s NYSE-listed shares, after revenue and profits figures for the first quarter of its April to March financial year came out in-line or weaker than some forecasts. The shares dropped 10% on Friday to $15.2.

Eros Int’l. reported revenues up 42.2% to $71.1 million, compared to $50.0 million in the equivalent quarter last year, with operating profits up 76% to $7.2 million, compared to $4.1 million in the prior year period.

The company said that Eros Now has 49.6 million registered users worldwide across apps, WAP and web and that it has over 1.1 million active unique paying subscribers who have paid for at least one month.

The company declined to reveal either the current churn rate or the value of the subscription revenues, which it included within the ‘digital ancillary’ category. It revealed the breakdown of revenues as 53% theatrical, 27% TV licensing, and 20% digital.

Eros said that 1 million figure was previously the company’s three-year target for the 2017 financial year, and it has now doubled that objective to 2 million paying subscribers for the year to March 2017 – a figure it said that took no account of a recent carriage deal with the Reliance Jio mobile broadband platform that launched in India this week.

“We would like to achieve 2 million paying subscribers by the end of fiscal ’17 and 5 million paying subscribers by the end of fiscal ’18. Eros Now has a five-year target of at least 15 to 20 million subscribers worldwide with a blended annual ARPU of conservatively $5 from India and $30 internationally, with 80% of the target subscribers from India and the remaining 20% from international markets,” said CEO Jyoti Deshpande on an earnings call with shareholders and investment analysts.

Movies “Housefull 3” (Hindi), “Sardaar Gabbar Singh” (Telugu), “24” (Tamil), “Ki and Ka” (Hindi) and “Marudhu” (Tamil) were the main revenue contributing titles during the quarter with strong performance across all revenue streams. The company also received a boost to revenues from the resumption of catalog titles, which it had temporarily suspended.

Deshpande said that Eros would remain involved in production and production finance, despite the recent withdrawal from the sector by Disney’s UTV unit.

“We have a strong greenlighting process where we evaluate all kinds of parameters – presales, potential revenues, genre, timing of the release. We’ve built a science around it and we try and not to greenlight films which have to be a blockbuster for us to make our money back, … we are willing to pass on high profile films if we have to overpay for it. Some of the others are just going through that learning curve now, but what it has done is it has put a very nice downward pressure on talent costs and content costs,” said Deshpande on the conference call, transcribed by Seeking Alpha.

“We’re already at a stage where we pretty much manage portfolio and we’re not sort of dependent on one or two films for our revenues. (Our) Hindi and regional slate split across high-medium-low is a solid strategy, and content driven films are getting more backing than just pure talent-driven films.”

More Biz

  • Singer-rapper Psy performs during the 70th

    YG Agency Boss Quits as K-Pop Scandals Expand

    Yang Hyun-suk last week resigned from his remaining positions at YG Entertainment. The talent agency he co-founded is deeply mired in a series of inter-linked scandals that stretch from drugs to prostitution. Problems started with the band Bigbang and its star Seungri, but now also encompass other YG artists. Hwang Bo-kyung was appointed as the [...]

  • NEW YORK, NY – JUNE, 24:

    LGBTQ Stars Honored at Variety’s Power of Pride Celebration

    New York City felt the full power of pride on Monday, as Variety celebrated its inaugural issue devoted to the annual recognition of LGBTQ people worldwide. At an intimate gathering at Mr. Purple, the rooftop bar at Hotel Indigo Lower East Side in Manhattan, Variety’s cover stars and luminaries gathered for cocktails and the unveiling [...]

  • Motown Seeks to Block 'O-Town' Trademark

    Motown Seeks to Block 'O-Town' Trademark

    UPDATED: The boy band O-Town briefly rose to fame in 2000, with a star turn on MTV’s reality series “Making the Band.” But the reformed group has just one obstacle to its efforts to trademark its name: Motown Recordings. The label’s parent company, Universal Music Group, is trying to block the band from registering “O-Town” [...]

  • Alyssa Milano

    Alyssa Milano Settles $10 Million Suit With Former Accountant

    Actress Alyssa Milano has settled a legal battle with her former accountant as the case was on the verge of going to trial. Milano and her husband, agent David Bugliari, filed suit in 2017, alleging that accountant Kenneth Hellie had forged her signature on checks, failed to pay overdue bills and taxes and allowed costs [...]

  • J Balvin ‘Amicably’ Parts Ways With

    J Balvin ‘Amicably’ Parts Ways With Longtime Manager Rebeca Leon

    J Balvin and his longtime manager Rebeca León have “amicably” parted ways, reps for the singer and León confirmed to Variety. The news was first reported by Billboard. León — who also oversees the careers of fast-rising Spanish singer Rosalia as well as Colombian superstar Juanes, with whom she founded Lionfish Entertainment — began managing Balvin early in his career [...]

  • Ann Sarnoff Headshot

    Warner Bros. Taps BBC Studios Americas Chief Ann Sarnoff as CEO (EXCLUSIVE)

    Warner Bros. has tapped BBC Studios Americas president Ann Sarnoff as its new CEO, a surprise pick that is sure to shake up the venerable studio. Sarnoff becomes the first woman to head Warner Bros. in its nearly 100-year history. She was under the radar during WarnerMedia’s search for a successor to lead the studio [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content